Count the Kids

I read the other day that over the past 14 years, Palestinian parents have been burying a child killed by Israel every three days. So a did a bit of digging, found some stats from the folk over at Remember These Children project and created a basic visualisation of kids killed on both sides.

Here is the data over the past 14 years. Make up your own mind.

Who drowned the Salama sisters?

Salama sisters, Palestinian refugees living in Syria who drowned when their boat capsized while leaving Egypt.

These beautiful sisters from the Salama family drowned yesterday when a boat of Palestinians and Syrian refugees capsized near Alexandria. They were from Basel’s street in Yarmouk camp, Damascus. May they and their family find peace. (message from my friend Emily, on Facebook)

I didn’t know the Salama family or these beautiful girls but I spent much of my two years in Syria living in Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp, not far from their house.
Continue reading ‘Who drowned the Salama sisters?’

Israelis give their votes to Palestinians in protest

I’m super proud of Shimri and his crew for an Israeli-Palestinian followup to the Give Your Vote campaign we ran in the UK in 2010. Continue reading ‘Israelis give their votes to Palestinians in protest’

US Elections: The invisible Supreme Leader

Obama and Romney World

What I used to dislike about the Iranian elections is what I dislike about all national elections today: they’re all fake.

There is a choice but it’s not a meaningful one.

With the Iranian elections the argument would be: Ahmadinejad or Karroubi/Mousavi, it doesn’t matter, the real power is with Khamenei the Supreme Leader. So you can elect the Iranian President but you can’t elect the Supreme Leader. Well that’s the situation we’ve all got today, even in the US.

There is a Supreme Leader casting a long shadow over every national ‘democratic’ process. Continue reading ‘US Elections: The invisible Supreme Leader’

#occupywallstreet vs Avaaz

Avaaz vs #occupywallstreet
I wonder how many people at Avaaz saw the irony of their email calling on people to sign a petition in solidarity with protesters on Wall Street.

Adbusters, who put out the original call for #occupywallstreet back in July, are vocal critics of ‘clicktivism‘, the derogatory term for the growing industry of organisations (like Avaaz and 38 degrees) who try to mobilise people around clicking petition links. Don’t get me wrong, I sign many of Avaaz’s emails, but there are significant issues with their model. Continue reading ‘#occupywallstreet vs Avaaz’

Hell yeah!

Shane and Sarah are free!
Shane and Josh are free!

Hands Off My Tips!

UK restaurant owners are stealing tips - legally

UK restaurant owners can legally steal tips – and they do.

Besides all the other things that regularly wind me up (planetary injustice, border controls etc) there is a more local issue that is seriously beginning to piss me off: tips. Or rather, stolen tips.

Yep, that’s right. My tips in restaurants are being stolen. Yours are too. And it’s all happening fully within the bounds of the law.
Continue reading ‘Hands Off My Tips!’

Happy birthday Shane

Shane Bauer
Today I’m fasting for my mate Shane, who is 29 today.

Together with friends across the world, I’m protesting Shane and Josh’s detention in Iran’s notorious jail for political prisoners, Evin.

Shane was captured in a cross-border raid by Iranian forces while in Kurdistan in Northern Iraq in 2009, along with another of my friends Sarah Shourd (since released) and their mate Josh Fattal. Continue reading ‘Happy birthday Shane’

Robert Fisk: Why on earth is Iran holding Shane Bauer?


The fact that Shane Bauer is still in an Iranian prison, nearly two years after being snatched by Iranian forces while in Iraq, is an outrage. It’s also a heavy blow to all of us who think – perhaps naively – that working for justice provides its own support and protection. But most of all, it’s deeply sad for the Middle East itself.

Shane has done more for the people of the region than almost any Arab or Iranian I know.

He’s also a great guy.

Continue reading ‘Robert Fisk: Why on earth is Iran holding Shane Bauer?’

The undemocratic invasion of Libya

Undemocratic invasion of Libya

Oh the bloody irony. While the fighter jets of the US, UK and France drop bombs on Libya in the name of freedom and democracy, few are bothering to point out the undemocratic process that sent them there.
Continue reading ‘The undemocratic invasion of Libya’